Economy dominates TV debate

B.C. Liberal leader Christy Clark and NDP leader Adrian Dix debated on TV recently.

By Tom Fletcher, Black Press

B.C.’s four major party leaders made their pitch for voter support in a 90-minute TV debate Monday evening, with economic and resource issues dominating.

B.C. Liberal leader Christy Clark pressed her attack on Adrian Dix, the front-running leader of the NDP, accusing him of advocating big spending on government programs and restrictive environmental views that deter industrial development.

“The NDP plan would rob Peter to pay Paul, hoping Paul will vote NDP,” Clark said. “My plan is to put both Peter and Paul to work.”

Dix referred to B.C.’s ninth-place position in provincial job growth so far this year. “Neither Peter nor Paul are working,” he said.

Both Dix and Clark pressed B.C. Conservative leader John Cummins on his rosy revenue forecasts, despite a promise to phase out the carbon tax on fossil fuels that would cost the provincial treasury more than $1 billion a year.

Cummins responded to Clark’s jab about him being forced to fire four of his candidates for various indiscretions. One of them was accused of impaired driving, Cummins said, adding that one B.C. Liberal candidate is seeking re-election after being convicted of the same offence.

Green Party leader Jane Sterk was on the defensive about her long list of promises, including a guaranteed annual income to replace existing social programs, and extensive social programs for rural areas. Asked about her proposal to immediately raise the carbon tax by 66 per cent, Sterk described it as a “gradual increase.”

As they have in the first two weeks of the campaign for the May 14 B.C. election, Clark and Dix clashed over oil and gas development. Dix denied there was a plan to impose a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, saying Cariboo-Chilcotin NDP candidate Charlie Wyse was wrong in referring to one last week.

Clark stuck to her five conditions for approving new heavy oil pipelines, refusing to endorse or oppose either proposal to bring more Alberta oil to the West Coast. She pressed Dix on his sudden reversal to oppose an expansion of the 60-year-old pipeline to Burnaby, which has seen increased demand for crude exports.

Just Posted

RCMP renew request for help finding missing Nakusp man

Christopher Sanford was reported missing Aug. 5

Updated: Early-morning fire near Trail destroys travel trailer and van

An arson-trained RCMP investigator will examine the scene

Anglican churches in Nelson, Balfour, Kaslo to marry same-gender couples

Rev. Jeff Donnelly says he’d love to host LGBTQ weddings

Update: Two women injured after motorcycle accident in Trail

The collision occurred Wednesday night just after 9 p.m.

Pregnant Kootenay teachers fight to change compensation rules

Risk to unborn babies not recognized by WorkSafeBC

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

U16 B.C. fastpitch team named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

Most Read